‘Basics of Alzheimer’s Disease’ is topic of senior college program

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BETHEL — “The Basics of Alzheimer’s Disease including Memory Loss, Dementia and Alzheimer’s Disease” will be presented by William J. Kirkpatrick, LICSW, program director for the Alzheimer’s Association, Maine Chapter, from 4:30 to 6:30 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 6, at the Bethel Congregational Church.

The program is sponsored by To Your Health of Western Mountains Senior College and is a follow-up to the “Ten Signs of Alzheimer’s” program held last month to a capacity audience.

Kirkpatrick said, “There continues to be fear and stigma related to a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease and this keeps people from getting the help and support they need.”

In his talk, he will cover the symptoms and effects of Alzheimer’s disease and other related dementias; how Alzheimer’s affects the brain; causes and risk factors; how to find out if it’s Alzheimer’s disease; and the benefits of early detection.

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He will also discuss how to address a diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease; the stages of the disease; treatment; hope for the future; and ways the Alzheimer’s Association can help. He will be available to answer questions and will have handouts.

Kirkpatrick received his master’s of social work degree from Boston College in 1978 and a certificate in bioethics and health policy from the Neiswanger Institute of Bioethics at Loyola University in 2010.

He has over 30 years experience in the health and mental health field with particular strengths, accomplishments and demonstrated expertise in medical social work, end-of-life care, bioethics and education.

He has also been involved in the training of students at the graduate level of social work and with first- and second-year medical students at the Alpert Medical School at Brown University. He joined the Alzheimer’s Association, Maine Chapter, as program director in December 2011 and lives in Brunswick.

The program is presented by To Your Health of WMSC with the collaboration of Bethel Family Health Center, SAD 44/Continuing Education, and the Alzheimer’s Association, Maine Chapter. The program is open to the public and admission is free. Light refreshments will be served. For more information, call Rosabelle Tifft at 824-2053.

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